Tips for Making Online Board Meetings Productive

Online board meetings are a reality for many organizations, and for good reason. They can save time and money as well as allowing for a wider range of opinions on decisions. However, there are certain problems with virtual meeting etiquette that can derail the momentum of meetings and hinder productivity.

Engaging remote participants is crucial to a successful meeting. Utilize video to introduce distant participants and encourage them to engage with their webcams. Encourage participation by asking participants to raise their hands when asked to comment or questions. Make them aware of the need to muffle themselves when they aren’t speaking to cut down on background noises, such as children and pets. Set a maximum amount of time to speak to avoid one person dominating an entire discussion and also to prevent boredom. This can be accomplished by listing the timeframes on your agenda, or appointing an individual to serve as timekeeper.

Make sure that your board members receive an agenda and a list of the agenda items they are expected to discuss during the meeting. This will ensure that your board members are prepared and ready to take responsible decisions. Board members should be urged to focus on the discussion and avoid tangential discussions that may not advance the agenda. It’s recommended that the minutes to be recorded to preserve the discussion and to provide a helpful way to revisit the meeting in the future. Additionally, arranging and sending follow-up tasks to participants following the meeting will aid in ensuring that all issues are addressed in a timely manner and that deadlines are not missed.

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